From Dusk Till Dawn – Chapter 8: Black out
The wolf howled into the night, as everyone stood around in silence as Udyr revealed that Zed is really his master, Spirit. While Udyr was shocked to see his old master, Karma was working on bringing Nidalee back to life with her reversing pain technique. Nidalee coughed up more blood, but it was a sign that she was alive. "Hold on, child. You are not ready to go just yet."
Without noticing, Udyr questioned his master. "Why…" Udyr was lost for words, and almost didn't want to believe it.
Spirit took off the rest of his armor, to reveal sharp shards of ice carved into his own skin. "Lissandra got me on the lust for power. You thought I died that day, but she only froze me into submission. I wanted to protect you, but instead I became a demon and gained extraordinary strength."
Udyr slammed his fist into the ground. "My master would never do such a thing. He was courageous and never submitted to cowards like the Ice Witch!"
"Aye, you know me well Udyr. However, you cannot deny fate. One of us is going to die today; will you fight me and become Ionia's new Spirit Guard?"
Udyr hesitated. "I don't want to believe you…I can't…kill you."
Spirit laughed, and cracked his knuckles. "You fool, Udyr." Then, he went on the offensive. He dashed towards Udyr, breaking through his turtle stance with his own powers. "SPIRIT CRUSH!" Udyr went flying backwards and barely got up. "You embarrass me so much. I KNOW YOU ARE HIDING YOUR TRUE POTENTIAL, SO COME AND FACE ME!"
"You…you're a monster, master. I don't want to live in a world consumed with rage and power. Kill me now."
Soul, who was knocked unconscious a while ago, stood up when he heard those words. He saw Spirit demolishing Udyr relentlessly, and now Soul was getting heated. Soul jumped out of Ahri's hands, and immediately went to aid Udyr.
"GET BACK!" Soul countered Spirit's next attack, as Udyr was now on the ground and defenseless.
"What are you doing? You are no match for him! STOP!"
"No, dad…" Soul looked over his shoulder, with tears running down both his eyes. "You need rest, and now it is time for me to prove to you that I have become strong. I can't sit back and watch you die after seeing mom go."
Spirit took down his hood, and was intrigued by Soul. When he further looked into his spirit energy, he saw a huge burst of energy coming his way. "What a fascinating child, Udyr. I would expect nothing less from my best student. However, not even the best pupils can overcome their master sometimes. PHOENIX, RISE!" Spirit transformed into his ascended Phoenix form, and now Udyr was scared senseless for Soul's life. Instead, Soul answered with his own spirit ascension.
"THE ASCENDED DRAGON, RISE!" This was a new form that not even Udyr had known about. When they were in hyper reality for 7 years, Udyr taught him how to effectively make use of his spirit essence and call upon nature to guide his strength. Instead of receiving the traditional elements of the Spirit Walkers, he garnered new spirits. Soul was now on the offensive. "DRAGON BLAZE!" Soul shot out sparks of flame, which directly hit Spirit. Instead of groaning, he laughed and consumed the energy.
"Phoenix beats dragon, you fool. DRAGON'S RAGE!" Spirit instantly teleported over Soul's head, and slammed him into the ground with his kick. When Soul hit the ground, his spirit was engulfed in flame. Every time Soul tried to get up, it hurt even more.
"Just stay down, kid. I've experienced thousands of fighters greater than you. I know what it takes to become a good fighter, and I can see great potential in you. The only thing that I was missing my entire life…" Spirit consumed his energy wave in his right hand. "…Is the drive to become perfect."
Udyr couldn't stand to keep on watching this battle proceed, but his options were very limited. He wanted to cry out for Soul, but to his surprise, Soul got up on his feet again. This time, he was trembling in pain, but up nonetheless. "You may be stronger than me, you may have lived a hundred times longer than me…hell, you probably might kill me…" Soul was gathering all the energy that he could take in for one last strike. Udyr was scared of his predicted outcome. He tried to stop him, but his left knee was bent wrong. Instead, he cried out. "SOUL, JUST STOP!"
Soul ignored Udyr, and started waltzing towards Spirit. "However, a true warrior never knows WHEN TO QUIT!"
Udyr closed his eyes. "NOOOOOOOOO!"
"SHOCKWAVE!" Soul unloaded the rest of his energy into a lined up shockwave that went straight for Spirit. Instead of dodging it, he blocked it with two fingers. Spirit was being pushed back a little, but he eventually caught it in his fingers.
"What a pathetic attack, now you will die because of it." Spirit threw it at Soul, who was on his knees. Yasuo, Karma, and Ahri watched as it was about to pierce through Soul, but Udyr stepped in the way of it, and absorbed it. Soul could barely still breathe, but would live.
"Why did you save me…I failed you."
"Shut up, you idiot." Udyr was holding one hand over his wound, and pointing his fist at Spirit. "Don't ever question my love for you. We, as a race, do not live by individual alone; we must continue our journey along the path that we travel. If you were to die today, then that would be all over. I am not letting that happen."
"Dad…" Soul fell over unconscious, and now Ahri went over to grab him.
Spirit was charging for another spirit blast. "I see I'm going to have to kill more people now to get that power out of you, Udyr."
Udyr's eyes grew red, and he yelled out into the air. The ground was trembling, as Ahri ran back over to where Karma and Yasuo were. Karma was the most surprised by Udyr's new approach.
Yasuo knew Karma had knowledge of the matter at handed, and questioned her. "What is going on right now Karma?"
"He's releasing the Spirit Demon inside of him. I sealed it in him for a good long time after his first encounter with Lissandra, but this time it looks like he has broken the barrier. I hope he knows the cost of summoning it, because it may very well decide the fate of Ionia itself."
Udyr's power was increasing at insane amounts. He looked over to Karma slightly, and knew what she was thinking as well.
'I know you told me to never break the seal unless I wanted a death wish, but Spirit has gone too far. THIS WILL END IT FOREVER!'
"The cost…" Karma continued, "…death."
Yasuo and Ahri were both stunned; they didn't want to believe the thought that Udyr was going to single handedly kill himself after witnessing his wife die and his son get pulverized.
"It is Udyr's free choice to do this, and he knows the power that he will get from releasing the demon. It really is a last ditch effort, so now all we can pray for is that Udyr can finish off Spirit."
Udyr grinded his teeth as his muscles were ripping apart as his spirit energy itself was feeding off of him. It was painful, but as a double edged sword it also increased his power tenfold. "It's ready."
"Finally, now I can see the brink of your power." Before Spirit could even continue, Udyr already initiated the fight. He was uppercut instantly, and bashed forward and backward in the air.
"YOU'VE BROKEN THE CODE OF THE SPIRIT WALKERS, MASTER; YOUR PUNISHMENT IS DEATH!"
Spirit was being crushed, but still had a bit of energy left to shield his back side when Udyr came in for another uppercut. Spirit went for a counter attack, but Udyr broke his hand instantly, and threw him to the ground.
'I…can't believe the strength of his demon…It looks like 100% of my power is necessary once again…'
"THIS WILL END IT – DEMON VAULT BREAKER!" Udyr felt half the pain which he had just inflicted onto Spirit, and he had to back away for a second to take a breath.
'That is my limit. It's finally…over…'
Yasuo got up after the devastating blow, and all the smoke was gone. "Is…is it over?"
Karma used her Clairvoyance to see through Spirit's thick gust of energy. Spirit's body was ripped to pieces in several places, and all of his arteries were broken, but it looked like he was crumbling to pieces.
Yasuo was curious. "What is it?"
"I don't believe it…Spirit surrounded his body in a shield. Now his spirit energy is turning into black blood."
Udyr couldn't believe it. He went over to witness it first hand, but all he saw was a dead body crackling away. Now, it spoke out.
"Once again, I expected nothing less from you. Now, let's see how you handle the Black Shadow of Dawn." Spirit rose from the dust, and he was literally a living shadow. He lifted his arms, and from it came razor sharp blades. "I sense fear, Udyr."
Udyr restored his power, even though he was still in serious pain. "You're pissing me off."
At this moment, Karma had gotten the brink of Nidalee's pain and reversed it towards herself. Nidalee was hardly awake, but could see everything. Nidalee looked at Soul, and back at Udyr. "I see…a connection between those two…" She studied Soul more. "That's my…son…right?"
Spirit disappeared momentarily, and appeared behind Udyr. Spirit thrusted his umbra blades into Udyr, but Udyr had knocked them out. The more blood that Udyr shed only attributed to his strength. "You'll have to do more than that, YOU TRAITOR!" Udyr went for a spirit blast, but it went straight through Spirit. For a moment, Udyr was just continually punching the figure of Spirit, but nothing had happened.
Ahri couldn't understand what was happening any longer. "Karma, why is Udyr attacking the air?"
Karma sighed. "I'm afraid he's gone insane. The demon is now in control, and Spirit has engulfed his demon veins with his black blood."
Udyr was not only going insane, but he felt even more pain. He envisioned shadows everywhere, continually stabbing him. It wasn't real, but it felt real to Udyr. Spirit didn't even have to come in contact with him anymore, because Udyr was dying on the inside.
"K...Karma…" Nidalee now realized what was going on.
"What is it, child?"
"I get it now. Soul, Udyr, Spirit, the Spirit Walkers, Ionia, Lissandra, I think I remember it all now." She got up, but Karma tried to get her back.
"You can't walk; you are in no condition yet!"
"Please, just let me…" Karma went ahead and let her go. Nidalee was walking towards Udyr, but now she was stopped by Yasuo. Instead of resisting, she just looked at Udyr. Nidalee's spirit essence was still awakening slowly, but she could see Udyr on the brink of destruction. She looked into his eyes, and saw fear.
'That look…I…remember it…' She thought more, and started hearing voices of Udyr:
'As a spirit guard, it is my duty to protect the good of nature….I don't have time to be a parent, even for such a talented child like Annie…Ionia is my one true destination…I've rest for too long, and now what I realize is…Nidalee..I…..I lo-love…you'
She fell faint for a second, but Yasuo caught her. When she got up, she just cried out his name: "UDYR, WAKE UP!"
Udyr pounded the ground, and yelled into the air, but his power was decreasing. It seemed that he had finally come to his senses. Udyr's red veins were losing their color, and all the demon waves that were coming off his spirit energy had faded.
Karma was amazed. "Incredible, she overcame Udyr's demon just by talking, but how?" Karma turned on her Clairvoyance for a few seconds, and immediately got her answer. "No way…Udyr and Nidalee have a link between each other's soul. It's like a spirit chain that connects them to each other. When Nidalee was on the brink of death, Udyr no longer had any control, but now that they are alive he has fear of death. The demon is gone."
Udyr lost the fear in his eyes, and Yasuo came to his side. "We finished this once before, and we can do it again, Udyr."
"Right. Let's do this." Yasuo went in first, clashing with Spirit's Umbra blades. Udyr was focusing on gathering the energy from the surrounding area. Not too long afterwards, Spirit vanished towards Udyr's location. This time, he did not let the insanity reach him. Udyr had a spirit barrier over him, which sealed him away from Spirit's insanity.
"It's ready." Udyr broke out of his spirit barrier and went straight for Spirit. Instead of trying to go for an offensive attack, he only tried to keep him down. Udyr grabbed Spirit from behind and locked him down. Sonic waves were coming from the palms of Udyr's hands and enveloping Spirit's shadow-like body. "Now is your chance Yasuo, END THIS!"
Yasuo was harnessing all his energy into one attack, but in the meanwhile Spirit was struggling out of Udyr's control. "You can't contain the Black Shadow of Dawn. The darkness has overcome your body."
As Spirit said that, Udyr looked down to see black blood enveloping his body. The black blood effectively covers one's body until they become a living shadow and become a true demon. Udyr couldn't let that happen; he got a hold of Spirit and pitted him right in front of his own body.
"What the hell are you doing, Spirit Walker?"
Udyr had little time left. "KILL US BOTH, BEFORE THE BLACK BLOOD SPREADS AND I BECOME A DEMON!"
Yasuo was in fear of killing one of his own comrades, but he knew the feeling of killing someone close to him and decided the opportunity must present itself beforehand. In this case, Yasuo had no chance. "I…have no options…"
Nidalee couldn't believe it. "No…NO!"
Yasuo finished powering up, and dashed towards both of them. "The final strike – SORYE GE TON!"
Everyone, except Nidalee, looked away momentarily, as Yasuo's blade pierced through Udyr and Spirit. Both of them shrieked in pain, but eventually fell over once Yasuo retrieved his blade. Nidalee was in extreme grief after just getting her full memory back and realizing who Udyr was. She dropped to the ground, covered in tears.
"Why? Why did it have to be Udyr? GOD DAMN YOU SPIRIT, GIVE HIM BACK!"
Karma tried to approach her, but Nidalee was beyond repair at the moment. In spite of her grief, pain, and shock, Nidalee had collapsed. Now, there were three people who were out cold: Riven, Soul, and now Nidalee. All three of the remaining warriors who were still awake focused their attention on Spirit, who was glowing bright. The shadow that he once was now sparkling and a round yellow spirit wave came out of the now vanished shadow. Once the shadow vanished, the entire Trinity Island became a lot brighter, and everything looked natural. Thresh, who was momentarily frozen along with Hecarim and Mordekaiser, burst into flames of light. Thresh's lantern shattered into thousands of pieces, and all the souls imprisoned came out as well.
'What in the world is happening? Did we…win?'
The spirit talked back, in a foreign language that only Karma could translate: "Xijan keros latz, Karma teo Ionia. Yazano nawon ji'tek."
"Ev'ri karra. I speak native language, as do the people who are with me." Karma knew the voice of the spirit, as well as what the situation was. Instead of explaining it as she went, she made it simple.
"This spirit which has been awakened is the forbidden spirit of the Spirit Realm, Xijan. He was sentenced here approximately 1,000 years ago on account of treason, and was abandoned by the rest of the spirit realm. Nocturne, who later on killed Zed, or Spirit, was the darkness that embodied the Shadow Isles. Xijan was trapped inside Nocturne, who later transitioned to Spirit. The living shadow of Spirit is a literal replication of the form that Nocturne took when he killed Zed: a complete demon made out of darkness. Now that the darkness has been dealt with, Trinity Island and the rest of the Shadow Isles has become pure once again."
Xijan went along with what Karma has said. "I must thank you brave warriors for coming here and setting me free of the eternal prison of darkness. This land is pure, but plagued with darkness. In the end, however, darkness only exists in the absence of light."
"Don't thank us; thank the Spirit Walker who sacrificed his life on behalf of the rest of us. He is the real hero, we are but mere spectators."
Xijan understood this, and had one last statement. "I see – now that my spirit is cleared, I am free to go as I please. I may just visit your Spirit Walker friend and see how he is doing. In the meanwhile, you should all take what you need and leave so nature may once again find peace in this beautiful yet ugly island."
"Before you leave, Xijan…I must ask of one request. The spirits who were tormented by Thresh are lying over by his broken lantern, is there a chance that you can restore them?"
Xijan brightened. "Certainly, Karma. Enviticus kaero KIN!"
The souls that surrounded the broken lantern returned to their respective bodies. Amongst the survivors were Lucian, Jin, Krystal, and most importantly Senna. When the two woke up, they were by each other holding hands, and woke up looking in each others' eyes.
"Senna, are you awake?"
Senna went over to hug Lucian. "I was always awake, but I'm glad that I could finally wake up with you."
Right beside them, Krystal and Jin were also relieved to see each other. The rest of those who were freed left the area almost immediately out of confusion.
Karma rounded up everyone, and personally took Nidalee on her back. "Thank you, it is nice to see you once again Xijan. Niva meta!"
"Niva meta!" The spirit of Xijan disappeared.
"I know this is all so sudden, but we must heed Xijan's words and go back home. I still have enough power to make another portal." Yasuo took Riven, while Ahri took Soul. Lucian and Jin, along with Senna and Krystal, also followed. They appeared right outside Karma's place, and Karma immediately got Nidalee, Riven, and Soul into beds for further treatment. Riven was the first to awake.
"Is it over, Karma? Did we win?"
Karma nodded, as she got Riven out of bed. "I'm glad that you woke up, I need to talk to you personally." Riven followed Karma into the same room that Riven's Black Shadow mark was sealed. Now that Nocturne and the Shadow Isles were no more, the Black Shadow of Dawn curse had disappeared from everyone who was victim to it. "I am going to die soon today. The reason I am telling you this is because I want you to take the rest of my powers and take over this place as a new hospital in Ionia. I already told the Elders that I wanted to hand it down to whoever I deem worthy enough."
Riven didn't think that she had it in her to take on such a heavy burden. "Why do you choose me, Karma? I've barely been able to hold my own against the enemy, how can I manage such a task?"
"It will come to you easily, my dear. The reason that I chose you is because of your potential to become one of the greatest. There are few who attempt to take on a role like mine, and so far I've found no one who even peaks my interest." She took off her Ionian gear, and held a spirit flame in her hand. "This is 95% of my power from my own inner flame in my spirit. With this, you will make a better connection to the spirit realm and be able to treat people in need. The choice is yours, but you must trust in yourself wholly."
Riven felt really touched that for once she was chosen and accepted into a higher position. It was a perfect position for someone like Riven. "I will do my utmost to take on your legacy, Karma."
"Then it is time." Karma placed her spirit flame inside of Riven, and immediately Riven felt all the spirit essence flow through her. Once that was done, Ahri asked Karma to come immediately. Karma followed, along with Riven.
"It's Nidalee again. I think she is on the verge of dying at this point. Her spirit is fading." Ahri was really worried for her sake as well as Soul's. She knew the pain of growing up alone, and hoped no one would ever endure that if she had something to do about it.
"Nidalee's spirit is in its fatal mode of life and death. Udyr had a very strong bond with Nidalee in spirit, so now that Udyr isn't here, it is hard for Nidalee to stay alive."
Karma got to work immediately, but she could do no more without her spirit essence.
'I wonder if Xijan will still see Udyr. I know that everyone here misses him so, including me.'
'I feel…light. Not exactly less fat, but really light. Oh right, I'm dead…lovely…' Udyr was now a spirit amongst the thousands in Spirit Realm. Right beside him was none other than Spirit.
"You know, I knew in the end that you would turn out to be the hero; I sure with it wasn't at the expense of your old man's life though!"
Udyr crossed his arms. "I don't know what the hell that's supposed to mean, but you are still a traitor to me."
"I know I've stirred a lot, son. Can I explain?"
Udyr took his arms away from himself for a second. "Did…you just call me son?"
Spirit sat down, and laughed. "As I stated, let me explain:
'I told you when you were young that you had regular parents, because I wanted to give you hope for your future. I had to train you and shape you to become a responsible and respectable person, because of how lazy you were to begin. Of course, I had a reason behind all of this. As you might know already, every 40 years or so the Spirit Walker descendants get a vision so they can see what their successor Spirit Walker will look like. I saw you with Ionia, and I saw that you had transformed from being selfish to caring for others' interests.'
'I'm not very convinced, but you are coming close.'
'I understand, but let me continue. The vision wasn't something that I could just interpret in one day; it took almost a few years to really understand what I had to do in order for me to shape the person who you are now. I know that because of our training, you became strong and interdependent. This was around the time that we got caught out by Lissandra. She froze me, but didn't kill me contrary to what you thought. I thought I was going down the wrong path by getting consumed by the lust for power, but it all made sense when I realized that it was my destiny to be your enemy and soon be killed by you. If I chose to reject the path of ignorance, then I would have taken you back with me. You would have broken Nidalee's heart, and you would have gone on the path to become a demon after I died.'
'How do you get that out of one vision?'
'Like I said, it took years to interpret. It was clear to me as it will be with you and your son. Anyways, I had to give myself up to the Shadow Isles. Nocturne killed me, and shaped me into Zed. The darkness at this time overcame my thought and reasoning, but I knew beforehand that it was for a greater good. I took a gamble, and nearly destroyed everything that meant so much to you, but you proved me right. As a father, I can't begin to tell you how happy you make me son.'
Udyr finally understood. "I see now, all of those instances of me going on the path to redeem my emotions were designed to shape me how I am now. You really are my father, but now that I know this I have to ask a few questions."
"Anything you want, I'll answer it."
"Who was my mother?"
Spirit lost his happy look for a second, and snapped his fingers. "You got me, I guess. Well, you are going to be pleasantly surprised by the answer…"
"Your mother is-"
Xijan interrupted them. "Spirit Walkers – Udyr and Spirit – I have a message from the Ionians."
Spirit sighed out of relief, but Udyr was upset at being interrupted at such an inopportune time. Yet, he waited to hear the message.
'This is Karma. Udyr, I think it is time that I confess something to you that I should have done a long time ago, but no longer have the chance to do.'
Spirit laughed. "I didn't even have to spill the beans. Thanks honey."
"What?" Udyr didn't understand what he meant by that. The message continued:
'I am your mother, and Spirit is your father.'
Udyr was lost for words. "That's…how is that possible? Karma looks younger than me!"
'I know you may think I am lying, but I would not lie. My appearance may look young, but that is because I take the physical form of whatever time I was at my peak while invoking my spirit essence. I was exceptionally strong around the time I was pregnant with you, and that is why I look so young. I would probably startle you if I ever let go of my spirit essence even for a few seconds. Now that you know this, I want you to know that I love you dearly and that everything I, as well as your father did, were all for the hopes that your future endeavors may be great. It really…makes me sad to know that your father took a gamble with your life…and that future is irrelevant now. I'm sure that Nidalee and Soul, as well as the rest of Ionia, will miss you dearly, my beloved son. Goodbye.'
The message concluded, with Udyr finally seeing the grand scheme of things. "I really messed it all up, didn't I? My son has no father, my wife is now in eternal pain, and I can't even see my own mother to tell her that I love her. Damn it."
Spirit consoled Udyr. "I wouldn't regret anything yet. I think Xijan also would have something to say, is that correct?"
"Indeed." Xijan continued. "I lived my entire human life inside the dark soul of Nocturne, hoping that the light would save me. You were able to do that, Udyr. Therefore, I want to reunite you with your body in exchange for being able to live inside of your spirit. Do you accept?"
Udyr's sad face turned bright and he was about to accept if it wasn't for his father and his own long look. "Dad, won't you miss me?"
"I had my time, you fool. Your family misses you right now, and that is all that matters. Be a better Dad than me, and give that Soul kid the time of his life, you hear me?"
"You sure are my master, Dad." Udyr went along with Xijan. "I accept the terms of agreement."
"Then it is done. Clairvaix Deus Ziva DON!" The spirit of Xijan embodied Udyr, and he felt his pulse once again. Udyr was cold once again, but he felt alive. It was just a matter of him waking up.
'Ugh, there's my weight again.' Udyr rolled over in the exact same position in which he died. The wound from Yasuo's sword was still there, but healing slowly. Udyr was mesmerized by his surroundings, and soon realized he was still in the Shadow Isles.
"The light really did overcome the darkness." Udyr also noticed the portal that Karma had left open. Instead of immediately going through it, he decided to see what the current situation was in Ionia through his inherited vision from Karma.
'I can see through it all. It looks like everyone is in Karma's place, and Nidalee is…wait, what is going on?'
He looked further, and heard the current conversation going on at that time:
"I can sense some warmth in her heart, as if she just had a good dream. However, her spirit is still fatally wounded." Riven came forward, and took Nidalee in her arms. "Everyone go get some rest, it is too late to just crowed around and hope that she lives. I will do what I can."
Soul was now awake, and he was crying lightly. "All of this happened because I wasn't strong enough. Dad is dead, Mom is dying, what is there left if I leave now?"
Riven came over to Soul, and harmlessly slapped him across the face. "Don't let me hear you say such a thing ever again. Udyr had to go his whole life with this motion that power is all that mattered, until he found out that losing your soul in favor for power is the wrong path. If there is anything you should take away from today, know that both your parents loved you more than anything else."
Soul wanted to object, but he knew that crying over death was now pointless. Riven wanted to turn a new leaf now that she was taking over Karma's position, and Udyr could understand that in her tone alone.
'Nidalee, stay strong. I will be with you momentarily…'